Feel the fear and do it anyway

One of the first personal development books I read was called ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’ and the main message I took from it as a hungry teenager looking for adventure was to face your fears head-on and take action whilst leaning into them.

This lesson has been a valuable one ever since and has given me the strength to travel alone, change careers, face rejection, emigrate, try new things even though I suck at them, meet new people and follow my dreams. 

This blog will help you understand your fear and might help you move towards a new way of seeing it, perhaps with curiosity, like watching a horror movie with your hands over your face whilst peering through the gaps in your fingers, instead of running for the hills only to have a nagging feeling of missed opportunity. 

Fear wears many disguises and can show up as feeling ‘stuck’. Emotions like anxiety, anger, overwhelm and denial. Feeling the need to be right in debates or arguments, low self-esteem, blame and many more emotions. 

It helps to know that fear is a way of keeping us safe. Our primal brain can’t distinguish between real danger and perceived danger so will send the same signals to the body to those who are scared of public speaking than to someone who is being chased by a big bear. 

Once we understand that these feelings are ‘normal’ we can start to break them down and overcome obstacles that have been holding us back. 

Every one of us has been through hardship of varying degrees and will have our own reasons for staying safe. A fear of what others think, a fear of making change, a fear of the unknown, a fear of failure, fear of success. It can be crippling. 

Your fear, are you ready to face it? 

1) Bring to mind something you would love to do or achieve but haven’t just yet. It could be losing weight, entering an event, a change in career, finding a partner, or joining a dance class. 

2Now take it a step further and write down:

Why do you want to do this thing?

What feelings does it evoke within you?

If you DON’T do this how will you feel?

How will you feel once you have achieved this?  

How will your life be different?

3) Now grab an A4 piece of paper and write down all of the negative things that could happen when you choose to do this thing. 

4) Turn the page over and write down all of the positive things that could come out of you facing your fear and doing it anyway. 

Pick up the paper and choose which side you are going to live from. 

Now this sounds simple but it really is a matter of choice. When you can see fear for what it is and refuse to give up on something that will bring you so much pride and joy once you have accomplished it, you will find the inner strength to make positive change. 

We are here for such a short time on this earth. My wish for you is to feel the fear and do it anyway.